Have you been seeing people at the back of pickup beds lately? Well, the Highway Patrol Group would like to remind the public that the practice is illegal.

“Ang likod ng pick up hindi ‘yan kargahan ng tao. Ang tao should always be considered as passengers, when you consider him as a passenger mayroon siyang upuan at seat belt. (The pickup bed is not for people. People should always be considered as passengers. When you consider someone a passenger, they must have a seat and a seatbelt),” said Brig. Gen. Eliseo Cruz, director of the Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group.

Cruz is backed up by Sections 32 and 51 of Republic Act (RA) 4136 or the Land Transportation and Traffic Code. There, it clearly states, “It is unlawful to allow passengers on board the cargo or freight provisions of a truck, including pickup vehicles”. It was signed on September 18 this year following a directive from the President himself, Rodrigo Duterte.

Even before the law was passed, the act of putting people on pickup beds or cargo holds has been prohibited on the major expressways in the north and south. With the amendments to the Land Transportation and Traffic Code, the said practice is now banned nationwide. If apprehended, the driver can face up to Php 3,000 in fines.